Wednesday, August 13, 2008

I Finally have some time!

Wow - what a lot of work a move is!! But we are in - for almost 6 weeks already! Time has just flown! We left SoCal early in the morning of July 1 - the guys in the truck and hubby's car and mom & Chris and me by plane! We definitely chose the easier route! At the 10 hour point in what was supposed to be a 16 hour drive, the guys were stuck in a small town with broken fan belts and 2 tires that would not go any further. They were all fixed and ready to go about noon the next morning and with traffic finally crossed into our new state about 7 that night. At that point they were still about 3 hours from our new home - well, in theory anyway - but they called to say they were "home"! A few minutes later they blew a tire as they were pulling into the weigh station! After several phone calls they found an "angel" who had the truck tire they needed and would come out and put it on. As he was changing the tire he chatted with the guys and told them he was recovering from a heart attack - - that he'd had just 3 days before!!!! He cheerfully got the tire put on and the lady in the weigh station finally let them continue on! Mom had gone back to Morning Glory's house to go to bed earlier, but Chris and I waited til the guys got home. We had the new beds set up, so there was room for the 3 guys to fall into bed when they got there, and then we went back to MG's house and crawled into our beds - - at 4am!! Yup - it took them 47 hours to get there - that includes sleep/delay time, but they had only planned on about 30 from start to finish!

The beautiful home that was ready for us though reved them up and by a little after noon that day the truck was unloaded and we were working our way through boxes! Chris' daughter T and her husband S flew up to help unpack and were a great addition to our crew along with MG and her hubby and my hubby's brother - L!! We couldn't have done it all without them!!
When we packed the truck in SoCal - we had more stuff than we realized and there wasn't room for the couch and loveseat in the truck - along with a few other items. We were able to find homes for everything real quick, and got the truck closed. That meant however, that we needed to buy new couches as soon as we got here instead of after a few months as we had planned. We all went to a local huge furniture store. Since hubby was chomping at the bit for his "big screen" this was as good a time as any! The girls went looking at couches and the boys went to electronics side! We came away with 2 couches, and leather chair and ottoman, an entertainment unit and a 52" flat screen tv!! A wonderful time was had by all!! Especially when we were the only ones who had to flip out the visa card! HA!! It was all delivered the
following week and we love it all!!
We had a lovely July 4th celebration in MG's back yard with Beth and Karen and all the kids, and all our moving buddies. Chris and Ron left Saturday morning to fly home, L took off with his truck on Sunday morning and Mom stayed for another week to help me unpack!! She is an amazing lady - at 84, she works circles around all of us! Her goal was to be able to get my car into the garage before she left. Well, we got close, but it took me another 2 weeks to actually be able to actually close the garage door behind it!
We are enjoying the house soooo much!! it is very open and the view out the back of the park is just wonderful! This is the view from the breakfast table - Wonder what this will look like covered with snow!!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

A Busy Weekend

This last Saturday night our choir gave us a going away party. It was a really fun evening with a lot of games, good food and friends! Hubby and I didn't realize it was a going away party til after the evening's events started! HA! I think we were a little dense there!! Anyway we were surprised at the end when they gave us handmade pillowcases that everyone had signed! The sentiments were all wonderful and some made us a bit teary. We're going to miss these folks!!
The pillowcases were made by my friend Chris and they will fit king sized pillows - they are a little hard to see, but the edging is sheet music! Perfect since we have been in this choir for more than 35 years!!
Sunday morning we went down to San Diego for MissA's dedication in church. In our denomination we don't baptise til the person is old enough to make that decision for themselves. But we do bring babies and dedicate them to Christ and the parents dedicate themselves to raise the child to know and love Christ. It's a really neat time! Well - of course MissA was adorable and when the pastor's wife was holding her and the pastor was praying for her, MissA grabbed her necklace and stuffed it in her mouth. It was so cute - and since there are always folks who don't close their eyes when someone is praying, a ripple of chuckles went through the congregation. We looked up to see her holding that necklace and happily chewing on it!
She is in that stage of getting teeth when the world is her chew toy - and at lunch, she "talked" Uncle Jeff into sharing his watch!
Sunday night was the annual Pie Auction at our church. Every year our teen department holds this event to raise money to send kids to church camp in the summer. It has gotten quite expensive for the week over the years and this helps more kids go at a reduced cost to their families! Pies - either purchased or home made are brought to either be served at $3 a slice or auctioned off. Folks also commit to bake a pie at some time during the year, and these "future pies" can be bid on too. It usually starts slow, but it doesn't take long for folks to get into the action. I baked 3 chocolate silk pies - (incredibly yummy!) - and during the evening they sold for between $150 - $200 each!! There were a lot of pies and in a 2 hour period we raised $6100!!! The last "pie" of the evening traditionally is the "pie in the face". This pie raises the most money, because all the bids go into one pot - I think it ended up at over $1200!! The person who had the most money pledged for them to get the pie, being a good sport, covers up with a plastic bag and the whipped cream flies! Many times Pastor has taken it, several times the Youth Pastor has gotten it, but this time hubby "won" the privledge!! He has been the chairman of the church board for more than 20 years and since we are moving, it was proposed that the new chair of the board throw the pie! So good friend Jeanne got the honors!! She was kind and only smooshed his face not his hair!!
Good times!!

Monday, June 02, 2008

More Remodel Pictures and Thots

My friend Morning Glory went by our house this weekend and I was greeted with a bunch of lovely new pictures of our house this morning when I turned on my computer!

They had to put a huge beam and trusses in to hold the whole thing up - it spans almost 40 feet from end to end!!

We didn't think they would be able to give us a vaulted ceiling at first - but our contractor said the truss company engineered it so it could be bumped up and it will be sooooo neat when it's done!!

We have some lovely big windows to take advantage of the daylight and the view. I am running out of adjectives to describe how excited we are about this; "wow" and "wonderful" and "beautiful" just don't seem like enough any more!! Its going to be big - and right now with no furniture in it - "huge" is another word that just doesn't seem like enough!! HA!!

They just started on the kitchen island and that is also going to be spacious and will take full advantage of the wonderful light and views! I'll also be able to be a part of everything that's going on! It has a bunch of drawers and a wide cabinet with pull-out shelves, the kitchen sink, dishwasher and a cool cabinet that will look like the others, but will house my trash can out of sight, but handy!

We picked out some paint colors - a soft goldy-yellow for the kitchen, medium taupe for the greatroom and a lighter taupe for the old living room/new dining room with a dark red accent wall at one end. We have a carpet sample, and the colors look good with it. That's as far as we've gotten though - we have no clue what the new furniture will be! We'll have to get in and live with it a bit before we make those choices. We do have the wonderful dining set and we'll bring the furniture we have now so we'll have some time to get the new stuff right!

One month from today - July 2 - the truck will be pulling into the driveway and the new chapter will begin! I started thinking about that yesterday - a new chapter. I do a lot of reading and authors usually start a new chapter when the story line makes a change. The existing characters don't change, and the relationships in the previous chapters don't go away, but there is a shift to something new. The chapters in the story leading up to the new chapter usually have set the stage for the story to shift, and their content has an impact on the continuing story line.

I sort of feel like that is what is happening in my life; my current chapter is winding down and the next one is about to make it's appearance on the new page. The characters that are in the narrative to this point don't go away or become less relevant to my story, they are special, and always will be. The story has been shaped by the friends and family and the daily lives we have lived, and we don't suddenly change because we have a new address. But in this new chapter there will be new characters and new adventures, and once again the story will be shaped by our changed environment. We have had a solid group of friends and family our whole lives and they are hard to leave. (We are hoping they will make frequent good use of our guest rooms!) The time with those folks will be always be special because we share a long history of friendship, prayer support and good times!

I'm excited about this new chapter - and a little apprehensive too - in order to meet new friends we will be challenged to step out of our comfort zones! I have lived in SoCal for 59 years and 353 days, and my mom and dad and grandparents before me! But 60 seems to be a perfect age for a new adventure!

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Purty New Car and House Progress

I'm writing in red today to celebrate my BE-U-TI-FUL new car! It's a Saturn Outlook - red, as you can see with pretty light tan leather seats! It will pull a trailer to camp with and has enough room to pick visiting friends and family up from the airport!! When we ordered it the dealer said it would take 10 - 12 weeks - but since it's about the end of the model year they got it out in just 5 weeks!! So we got to drive it for a day, but now it will just sit in our garage in Northern Retirement State til we get there!! Oh well - it didn't make any sense to drive it all the way to So Cal for just a few weeks then back!
The contractor is moving right along on our remodel! On Monday they got the sub-floor down and he told me yesterday that the wall framing was up!! Can hardly wait to see that! It is sooo fun - it will be a large room with plenty of windows and lots of light!
It was such a fast trip - up on Sunday, back on Tuesday, but we got sooo much done! We registered the car, ordered all the windows, the back door and a new front door, confirmed the carpet, hardwood floors and counter tops and found pendant lights and a chandelier for the dining room!
I still have to get the sink faucet ordered - I sure wish Dishmaster made a prettier, more updated looking faucet - but I love the pull-out scrubber-handle-with-the-button-for soap SO MUCH I will overlook that the company has fallen a bit short in the faucet design!
Well, we leave next Tuesday for Paris, France! Hubby and I are spending 4 nights there to explore the beautiful city, then we'll leave Sunday morning to take the Chunnel train under the English Channel to London where we will meet Morning Glory and her hubby! We'll spend another 10 days with them in Southwestern England!! Then we'll come home to just a month before we pack the apartment and head north!! Boy!! This last 2 years has gone SOOOOO FAST!!!

Friday, May 02, 2008

Granddaughters Are So Fun!

We had so much fun last weekend - we got to babysit our granddaughters! Computer Guy and Darling Wife had a special date and we were only tooooo happy to drive down and help them out!

As we approached the door MissC greeted us with, "GrandiPoppys here! Mommy, GrandiPoppys here!!" at the top of her lungs! I love it!! Makes the drive worth it even if that's all there was!!!

We played while mommy and daddy got ready to go - they looked soooo good!! Then off they went and we played games, read books, told stories - all around had a wonderful time!! Because it is a long drive we stayed the night so CG & DW wouldn't have to cut their evening short.

Hubby slept on the blow up bed, and I shared the couch (quite comfortable actually) with Cooper the granddog! The guy cracks me up! It was hot in the afternoon - so here he is trying to stay cool, and this is one of the positions he was in when we were sharing the couch!! He really poses himself in these positions!!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Next Step - Foundation

Morning Glory just sent more pictures!! We now have a foundation!!

The bump-out will be a lovely breakfast room at the end of the kitchen - this is soooo fun to watch through her camera lens!

We can also see that our neighbors on both sides have finished putting their fences in too! We have met the folks on one side, but the big house on the other side (you can see a play house over the fence) was for sale a long time before it finally sold just a few months ago. We haven't met them yet, but I'm looking forward to that!

Here's a picture from the inside of the larger of the 2 guest rooms, the wall and door came out and a new entry will be built and the room will be enlarged to include the short wall that is just studs now. It will make it a really nice sized bedroom. The rest of the area behind that is all great room!

We'll be going up in early May for a really fast trip to choose lighting and windows! The framing should be started by then! I can hardly wait to see it in person! Thanks MG for sending us pictures!!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Gentlemen - Wield Your Hammers!

Oh my gosh!! They have started!!! Our contractor has done the excavation for the new foot print, and has started 'de-construction' of the back side of our Northern Retirement State home to add a 500 sq ft addition that will turn the 4th bedroom, small dining area and kitchen on the flat back side of the house into a lovely great room, breakfast room and expanded kitchen with views of the park behind us and the beautiful mountains in the distance! This sure doesn't look like that big of an area - but it is!

Here's what the kitchen looked like a week ago -( these pictures were actually taken the day we bought the house)!

Now here's what it looked like yesterday!! Morning Glory went and took pictures for me! Is this neat or what!! They took all the cabinets out and put them in the garage for the time being. Then when the outside is put together they will bring them back in and reset them in a little different configuration!!
Anyone interested in a nice gas stove? I prefer electric and will be buying a new one when we get there.
The guy doing all the ripping apart was sure we'd be horrified at what we saw in the pictures she was taking - but she assured him it would be ok! This is soooo exciting!!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Another Good Read and Other Stuff

I'd like to introduce you to someone I've referred to in my blog as "Darling Wife"! She now has a blog by the name of Sugar Free Cherries! Drop by and say hello when you have the time!

I had a jarring piece of news yesterday - I have 3 herniated discs in my neck! About a month ago we were coming home from Northern Retirement State after a visit, and I muscled my not-too-light carry-on suitcase up into the overhead on the plane. I didn't get it high enough, and it bounced back at me. I caught it a bit off balance and shoved it in again and at the same time felt my neck shift. I thought at the time that I shouldn't have done that, and turns out that I was right!

The pain started in just a few days, and has been relentless for almost 3 weeks! I started going to my chiropractor after the first week, and it wasn't getting any better. He scheduled an MRI for me this last Monday, and I started with an Acupuncturist the same day. I got the results of the test last night and am blown away. I have changed some things in my life forever, by my "I am woman, I am strong" act of hefting my own suitcase over my head instead of asking for some help.

My Chiro and my Acupuncturist both feel they can help, so I am going to continue with both. Actually, today is the first day I have not been in total pain in 3 weeks. I can still feel the tightness - but it has been a good day! Ladies - a word from the wiser - allowing someone to help with the heavy stuff is not a bad thing - does not make me less in charge of my life - and will make the guy in my life happy that he can help me!!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Pretty Exciting Weekend

We just got back from spending a long weekend with Morning Glory and her hubby in Northern Retirement State!! Boy! Did we have a fun time! We always enjoy staying with them and as usual had a great time! We even actually let the guys win at Canasta one night! One of the other reasons for going was to meet with our contractor about our remodel and they will actually be starting within a month!! He is getting bids from his subs and he is finishing up the changes on the plans,then he'll get the permits, and get started on it!! We went and picked out carpeting, wood floors and counter tops - - and we even ordered my new car!! We got so much done in a short period of time!!

Our renters have been smoking in there and the place REEKS!! They are leaving it clean other than that though, so once we tear up the old carpet the nasty smell will be gone. We chose a really neat carpet - it is a little bit shaggy, but not too long and has a few specks of a deep red, navy, green and gold - but it is basically a dark tan that will not show tracked in dirt. We also chose wood to replace the ceramic tile in there now - it's pretty - but we are not tile floor fans and since we are doubling the size of the kitchen we will need to re-do the floors. It's oak and has a "hand planed" finish so dents and wear won't show. In real life it looks really good with the carpet and with the cabinets in the kitchen - which we are keeping and adding more of!
We have granite counter tops now, and they are pretty - but they won't work for the new shape of the counters so we picked out a surface that looks similar in color, but isn't nearly as busy or expensive! I've always had laminates and I've had no issues with them - so since we have in the neighborhood of 90 sq ft of counter tops we went with that as a more affordable alternative! It's one of the new types, and it is beautiful!! We are doing the backsplash in tumbled travertine - with a pieced border - I'm sooooo excited to see all this come together!
We also went out to meet the Saturn dealer in town. I had been emailing him and told him I wanted to buy a car from him. I thought it would be a good idea for him to actually meet us to see that we were serious buyers. We looked at the cars with MG & hub and met with the salesman and ended up ordering my car!! Yippee!! It's a red Saturn Outlook and it will take 10 - 12 weeks to come in. That will be perfect for our move date!! It's all a bit scary - we got all this stuff arranged and ordered in just a couple of days!! It's really happening!! Wahoo!!
It's been sort of amazing how everything has been working out. We have really put a lot of prayer all along into this move and we've made our plans - then given God full "veto power"! So far the doors have opened and we just keep moving through them! One of the things that hadn't dropped into place yet was jobs. I had been given the go-ahead to reduce my hours and work from home and stay with my company. That is a real blessing because of the insurance. But there was the concern about what hubby would be doing, because we really don't want to start taking his social security this early. Last week, just before we left on the trip, his boss talked to him and wants him to also stay with his company - and work from home!! Wow - we stand in amazement at how God works!!! So we will both have 30-hour a week jobs, computers and phone lines from our respective companies and insurance!! That will give us the freedom do work in a bit of gardening during the summer and a ski day every so often in the winter and still get the work done so we have salaries!! Perfect!
I just looked at this whole thing on line! What is with the spacing??? I really do have paragraphs with spaces in between on this composing screen! Oh well!!

Friday, February 01, 2008

It's Really Almost Ours

Well, our renters have been given notice and they will be out by the end of March!! Yippeeeeee!! We've owned this lovely home for a little over a year and a half, and with the exception of the week we bought it, I've only been in it 2 times!! I have bunches of pictures of every conceivable nook and cranny and measurements of all the rooms, but I haven't really felt like it has been truly MINE!!

Every time we visit Morning Glory we drive by, take pictures, walk in the park behind, and take more pictures - just to have a connection with it. But now - - almost really ours!!

We are planning a bit of remodeling, so we had a contractor and his architect go in to look at it - they are friends of ours, and I think the end result will be wonderful! Anyway when they went in the place reeked of cigarette smoke - so bad his throat hurt by the time they left!! He let me know and hubby and I decided that the renters were done!! We were going to let them stay a couple more months - but the fact that they are smoking in my house - MY HOME just frosts me! I'm very allergic to the smoke, so my understanding was that our property manager would be making that clear to any renter - aahhh - assumptions!! Anyway, we want our contractor to be able to start when he is ready, so having them out sooner rather than later is good.

So it's really almost ours!! Ours to remodel and decorate and welcome friends and guests to enjoy with us!! We are doing the remodel because there is a very small living room in the center of the house - nice, cathedral ceilings, fireplace - but very small when you take the "pass-through" areas into consideration. Also if you stand out on the back porch, behind the dining room you can see the lovely park behind our house, and the mountains in the distance. Unfortunately you can't see anything from the living room because it has no windows!!! SO! We are going to take a 4th back bedroom, the dining room and kitchen, bump the back wall out and make a wonderful great room! I've drawn ideas for the architect to "jump off" from and we are really excited!! We'll have a large living area, breakfast room, expanded kitchen and the old living room will become the dining room - which will hold our new dining room set beautifully!
We found it in October when we were visiting - it's the hutch with the leaded top windows and a table and 10 (yes 10!!) chairs!! It is a 54" round table with 6 leaves that can extend it to seat 18!! The furniture store offered to store it in their warehouse for us for free - so what else could we do but say yes!! It is really pretty and will look great in that room. We have always had hand-me-down tables, and we loved them and will still use Gramie's table in our breakfast room, it was so fun to actually choose something we both actually love!!
Well, That's all for today! I'm almost not a landlord!! Yeaaaaa!!!!

Friday, January 04, 2008

This Makes Me Much Better

Aaaahhhhh - breathing through my nose again is sooo sweet!! I finally am feeling like this thing is going away! YEA!!!

To make me feel really good today I got several emails from DiL in Ohio loaded with pictures!! We haven't had any in a while and these were like water on parched ground!

This is our oldest granddaughter MissT with little sister (grandaughter #3) MissK! So nice that all the girls have names that have different first letters!!

MissK looks like she is quite a character! She is 9 months old but was born 3 months early - so she is up to 15 lbs, and I hear she is starting to crawl!
Last time we saw them in August she was only 5 months but was still acting only 2-3 months old. So it looks like she is watching big sister and working on catching up!

MissT is 5 3/4 and is also quite a cutie - she loves craft and art projects of any kind. She is totally horse crazy - and since I was a horse crazy little girl when I was young we have had fun drawing horses and coloring them together!

Yea! I love picture days!!

Thursday, January 03, 2008

The Winter Cold

Is there anything nastier than the winter cold? No, not that winter thing that puts us in jackets and mufflers and might even mean snow. I mean that drippy, snuffly, coughy, congested winter cold. Hubby had it, now I have it - I don't want it and did not ask to receive it - but I have it. I have blown my nose til I have a charming red cold sore at the base of my nose and my cough sounds like my lungs are coming apart. Other than that I'm feeling better than I did over the weekend so I am back at work and trying not to sound contagious!

I don't think I am by now, the low feverishness was gone by Sunday - I think I'm just in the "mopping up" stage now. Hubby got it first, and he tried to be stingy with it, but it finally caught me.

I've taken Airborne (wasn't that supposed to prevent this?), vitamin C, Tylenol Cold and Flu (daytime and nighttime), Echanasia and Goldenseal (sp?), and Contac. I put Mentholatum on my nose and Vicks on my chest at night. I'm sucking on Vics Mentholiptus, more vitamin c, and Ricola, and hubby and I have gone through 2 family-sized boxes of Puffs plus Lotion tissues! I've been sleeping on the couch for 2 weeks, because we are both snoring, coughing and blowing noses at night and this way we won't wake the other up - just in case one or the other of us has finally gotten to sleep that is! (Gheesh - isn't that an adorable picture!!)


I am ready to talk to coworkers without explaining that my voice is gone but I'm feeling better; to quit coughing and blowing my nose; to answer the phone without wondering if all the sound will be there when I say hello!

On the plus side - I've lost 3 pounds because nothing tastes good! HA!!